Latest News

Sicilian Vegetable Stew:  Canazzu

Sicilian Vegetable Stew: Canazzu

Canazzu, or canazzo, is a flavorful mélange of stewed vegetables consisting mainly of eggplant, much like caponata.  This rustic Mediterranean dish is similar to the southern Italian ciambotta, the French ratatouille, and the Spanish pisto.  The word canazzu means ugly dog and the name implies a dish that is thrown together quickly and looks rather […]

Continue Reading
Fried Pizza Dough Panini Sandwiches

Fried Pizza Dough Panini Sandwiches

Whenever my mother had leftover pizza dough she would make pasta fritta (fried dough).  The thinly rolled out pieces of the dough would puff up as they fried in olive oil.  The fried breads where fragrantly yeasty, soft on the inside, and lightly crisp on the outside.  She would sprinkle them with powdered sugar.  But […]

Continue Reading
Baked Ziti al Forno with Meat Sauce

Baked Ziti al Forno with Meat Sauce

Making baked ziti is like making manicotti or lasagna, only much easier to prepare.  It is the perfect one-dish meal to make for a family dinner served with a salad and some crusty Italian bread.  These days it’s just me and my hubby, so I don’t make it as much as I would like because […]

Continue Reading
The Ultimate Profiteroles - Cream Puffs

The Ultimate Profiteroles – Cream Puffs

Profiteroles are French or Italian cream puffs made using pasta choux dough (pàte à choux in French).  They are also referred to as bignès.  Catherine di Medici is attributed with their introduction into Italian cuisine.  Everyone loves cream puffs but most people think they are hard to make.  They are actually very easy providing you […]

Continue Reading
Stuffed Sardines Beccafico

Stuffed Sardines Beccafico

Sarde alla Beccafico, a very old dish in Sicilian cuisine, is still popular today.  The dish is made with fresh sardines that are stuffed with toasted bread crumbs, currants, pignoli, cheese, and parsley.  The fish roll-ups are then baked in a casserole snuggled between bay leaves, orange, and lemon slices. The beccafico, a species of […]

Continue Reading
Eggs in Purgatory (Tomato Sauce)

Eggs in Purgatory (Tomato Sauce)

Eggs in Purgatory or Eggs in Tomato Sauce is an easy dish to make for breakfast, lunch, or dinner.  This is a rustic dish in which eggs are poached in a simple tomato (marinara) sauce seasoned with onions, garlic, and basil.  For some reason unbeknownst to me, marinara sauce tastes better when made in a […]

Continue Reading
Pasta with Anchovies and Toasted Bread Crumbs

Pasta with Anchovies and Toasted Bread Crumbs

Pasta with Anchovies and Toasted Bread Crumbs (muddica atturata) is one of the simplest pasta dishes to make in Sicilian cuisine.  The seasoning sauce (olive oil, garlic, and anchovy) takes 2 minutes to cook.  Dinner ready in 20 minutes or less (if you toast the bread crumbs ahead of time)!  How’s that for in a […]

Continue Reading
Roasted Lemon Garlic Chicken Thighs

Roasted Lemon Garlic Chicken Thighs

My girlfriend Alison, who is of Greek ancestry, sparked the idea for this recipe.  She asked me if I had a roasted chicken recipe that was lemony and garlicky and had oregano in it.  Sicilians and Greeks are brothers in common for their love of lemon, garlic, and oregano.  I immediately thought of my recipe […]

Continue Reading
Octopus and Potato Salad

Octopus and Potato Salad

While visiting my daughters in the Washington, D.C. area, I made a trip to the local seafood market.  Really fresh seafood is hard to come by in the mountains of North Carolina, where my husband and I spend our summers.  I was instantly intoxicated by the variety of fish and crustaceans exhibited, including the octopus.  […]

Continue Reading
Cooking Technique: Finely Mincing Garlic

Cooking Technique: Finely Mincing Garlic

HOW TO FINELY MINCE GARLIC Many of my recipes call for finely minced garlic.  There are basically two popular methods for mincing garlic.  Most people use a chef or Santoku knife and chop the garlic on a cutting board.  Another method is to use a garlic press, which does not produce a fine mince.  There […]

Continue Reading